"Germany is by far the world's biggest winner from globalisation," says Thomas Mayer, Deutsche Bank's chief economist. "It has benefited from both increased division of labour on the production side and increased trade on the delivery side."
Germany's recent economic performance stands out among rich economies. Last year its GDP grew by 3.6 percent, the fastest rate since the country was reunified in 1990. America managed 2.9 percent. Growth in the rest of the euro zone probably fell short of 1 percent. Exports have been Germany's main engine: they jumped by 21.7 percent in the year to November. In the first ten months of 2010 sales to China were already 17 percent higher than in the whole of 2009 and 46 percent higher than in 2007. No other big, rich economy has seen its exports to China grow so quickly in the past decade. No wonder that business confidence, according to a widely watched index produced by Ifo, a research institute at the University of Munich, is at a record high, having recovered from a horrid plunge in late 2008.
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